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[02.21.2011 by Bridget Doyle]


 » The Top 30 Albums of 2010 - Fashionably, fabulously late, our favorite music (and believe me, there was a LOT) of 2010, the year that some have called the best year for music ever. And only some of those fools work here. Plenty of usual suspects, lots of ties and a few surprises that I won't spoil, including our unexpected #1.
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 » Live: Surfer Blood/The Drums at Lincoln Hall, Chicago, IL - Remember when Weezer used to put together records that you could sing along to and rock out to? That's what Surfer Blood's show was like!
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Music Reviews

Screaming Females - Castle Talk
»Screaming Females
Castle Talk
Don Giovanni
Trent Reznor & Atticus Ross - The Social Network [Original Soundtrack]
»Trent Reznor & Atticus Ross
The Social Network [Original Soundtrack]
The Null Corporation
Deerhunter - Halcyon Digest
Halcyon Digest
No Age - Everything in Between
»No Age
Everything in Between
Sub Pop
Robyn - Body Talk Pt. 1/ Body Talk Pt. 2
Body Talk Pt. 1/ Body Talk Pt. 2
The Walkmen - Lisbon
»The Walkmen
Fat Possum
I Know Your Troubles Been Long
Bar-None Records

Rating: NR/10 ?

October 1, 2004
I guess I should pay more attention to the old adage, "Be careful what you wish for, you just might get it." After listening to the beautifully intricate release Blanket Warm from Ted Stevens' other-other outfit, Lullaby for the Working Class, I wanted the follow-up to Mayday's Old Blood to be a nice blend of the two albums' sweeping acoustics and touchy pacing.

I Know Your Troubles Been Long rambles along semi-aimlessly with banjos and strings, electronic doo-dads and quotes - from Franz Kafka to George Bush Sr. - to create what might best be described as a fishing album. In fact, the track "Crawfish River" sums up the feel of the album entirely, moaning, "Let's go down to the riverbed/ let's go and catch some crawfish/ Mom will throw them in the kettle/ break their l'il backs first". One part admirably lazy, one part disturbingly skewed, I know I've had too much sugar for this album.

At its best, the musicianship takes over. "Lone Star" is an undeniably ripe opening track; "Running Away" brings the stirring drums of a military march beckoning all front porch recruits; "Lost Serenade" is a captivating glimpse at a dreamy, wasted day, and "Lesson Two for Children: Making Biscuits" is an album favorite that shows a banjo ditty can be skillfully fun.

On the down side, tracks like "Virginia" sound remarkably like the off-center tracks that crept their way into Go Back Snowball's debut: Doors-like vocals set to bleary electronic wavering and little purpose. In fact, many of the in-between tracks cross the line between easy, indolent recreation and tiresome, slow drudgery. This album has a time and place in the welcoming arms of a creekside retreat, and unless your whole purpose is to unwind completely for its own sake, it may provoke those of us with shorter attention spans. Still, Mr. Stevens brings us a few pages of enjoyable country-tinged literacy, and in its moment, it is wholly appealing.

Reviewed by Sarah Peters
A former music editor and staff writer for LAS, Sarah Peters recently disappeared. Perhaps one day she will surface again, who knows.

See other reviews by Sarah Peters



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